Gardening: Herbs to grow for a ‘continuous’ fresh supply and ‘ideal’ time to water them

Homebase UK provide advice on June gardening jobs

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Commonly used herbs can be easily grown in traditional herb or vegetable gardens, raised beds, containers or on windowsills. Popular ones to grow include basil, dill, coriander, parsley, sage, mint and thyme. While all may need slightly different needs, the RHS recommended sowing ones that “rapidly run to seed” for a “continuous supply” of herbs to use.

The RHS said: “Herbs grow best in full sun and light, well-drained, moisture-retentive, fertile soil with plenty of organic matter incorporated.

“For a continuous supply, sow seeds of ones that rapidly run to seed, coriander and dill for example, on a fortnightly basis throughout spring and summer.

“Choose several cultivars, where available, with different maturing times to help keep the herb garden productive.”

Herbs such as chives, mint and parsley should be placed on a south-facing windowsill to ensure they receive as much light as possible.

They will also need to be brought in when the weather is cold outside.

The RHS added: “Keep a few containers near the house for easy picking and pot a few larger containers with stronger-growing herbs such as sage and mint.”

To help get a continuous supply of herbs, the experts also recommended making use of new or used growing bags, especially where space is limited.

Gardeners should also start in the spring by sowing herbs under clothes and grapes.

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The RHS continued: “Sow a few trays in a greenhouse, conservatory or sunny windowsill and grow plants ready for planting out when the soil warms up.”

Looking after herbs is fairly simple, as long as they get enough sunlight and water.

According to an expert, providing herbs with regular watering is “important” so that they can withstand heat.

Sarah Dixon, UK and International Marketing Manager at Hozelock, explained: “Ideal time to water your herb is around the roots first thing in the morning so that the plant can absorb the water before the sun.

“The Hozelock Multi Spray Ultramax has seven spray options including a cone and fine mist spray which are ideal options for seedlings or delicate plants, such as herbs.”

Other brands of hoses can also be picked up online as well as garden centres.

To help retain the herbs shape and promote healthy growth, Sarah recommended cutting back the herbs on a regular basis.

She said: “Cutting the plants also prevents the herbs from flowering, which is very important, especially in the beginning, as this could cause their premature death.”

Some herbs may be ready to harvest within a few days of sowing, while others may take a few weeks.

They can be easily picked by pinching out or cutting before flowering.

Sarah added: “Even if you do not eat the cut herbs directly, you can freeze them or put them in ice cubes.”

Herbs such as coriander, dil, basil and wild rocket can be quick to bolt, especially if they are overcrowded or being grown in poor soil.

The RHS recommended having regular sowings of these to ensure a good supply.

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